From SABR member Jay Jaffe at FanGraphs on February 28, 2018:
The 2018 season is a big one for Clayton Kershaw. The three-time Cy Young winner isn’t just chasing the World Series ring that still eludes him, he’s trying to remain healthy wire-to-wire for the first time since 2015. At the end of the year, he’ll have the chance to reclaim his spot as the game’s highest-paid pitcher if he chooses to exercise an opt-out clause in the seven-year, $215 million deal he signed in January 2014.
Via the Los Angeles Times‘ Andy McCullough, neither Kershaw nor the Dodgers are tipping their hands as to what might happen beyond publicly agreeing that they’re maintaining an “open dialogue” regarding the soon-to-be 30-year-old lefty’s contract status. If he does opt out, he’ll co-headline a stacked free-agent class alongside Bryce Harper and Manny Machado, with Josh Donaldson, Dallas Keuchel, Craig Kimbrel, and Andrew Miller among the other luminaries. There’s no indication that Kershaw would rather pitch for another team besides the Dodgers, who drafted him with the seventh overall pick in 2006, but he may not get a better chance to hit free agency while so close to the top of his game.
The above confluence of factors might be enough to send Dodgers fans out onto the ledge, but the team’s financial clout and Kershaw’s transcendent talent still suggest the two sides will find a meeting point. Where might that be?
Read the full article here: https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/clayton-kershaws-next-contract/
Originally published: March 2, 2018. Last Updated: March 2, 2018.